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April 21st, 2010

Fast actions Obsolete Pesticides in Armenia needed – URGENT


Important conclusions of site visit – fast actions Obsolete Pesticides in Armenia needed – URGENT

Dear All,

I am writing you this mail sitting now here in Yerevan working for OSCE and we really need now to generate some direct help for the Obsolete pesticides case.

We would need fast support from EU Commission for urgent actions now and we should also discuss the issue again in EU Parliament to generate now once and for all a permanent solutions for these problems in the near future.

Could you please prepare the necessary discussions!!

Please visit this site:
http://www.awhhe.am/eng/emergency2010.html

As you can see in the photos and the long correspondence, we are unexpectedly confronted with an emergency situation with direct threat to people and environment.

We are working on an emergency action plan, however that will only help short term, so urgently need financial help will be needed.

All UN organisations in Armenia are well informed. An intergovernmental Working group has been established and we had our first meeting with all ministries concerned. All parties agreed with a simple temporary cover action, but request at the same time final removal.

Estimated amounts not completely clear: originally 512 tons (Minister of Agriculture mentioned at least 800-1000 t yesterday) have been disposed in 1982, but the area where it is spread is much larger about 3000m2 with a depth that can vary from 2-3 m, so a max of 6000 – 9000 m3 is possible. Eventually some classification of contaminated soil and pure waste is possible, but this cannot be assessed now. So cost estimates in the end could vary from minimum 2.5 -3 Mill that can eventually run up to 18 -27 Million euro if the amounts are really so high.

Is there any procedure in the GEF, that would enable faster access to funding and facilitate the 2nd phase of the process of excavating the POPs pesticides waste, repack- temporary storage and then in the 3rd phase get a separate procedure for a proper international tender to ship the waste to one of the dedicated incineration plants in the EU. Normally all this would take some years, but here faster actions would be needed.

How can you assist to speed up things to get at least materials excavated , repackaged and stored temporary?

Please advice. We are trying with FAO also to get access to some emergency funding. OSCE ambassador has discussed with Russian government, which is willing to give support on acquiring repackaging materials.

The Armenian Prime Minister is planning to write a letter to international organisations to request further support.

Thanks for help!

Yours,
John

John Vijgen
Mob +45 2344165


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About IHPA

The International HCH & Pesticides Association (IHPA) is an independent and non-political network of committed individuals that wants to draw international attention on the world-wide problems stemming from the production and use of HCH and other obsolete pesticides and its dangers for human health and the environment.

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